Doing the things that you love doing will…

Yesterday, I was watching online tutorial on an educational site. I needed a break so I decided to browse the site to see what else was available. It wasn’t long before I found a video by someone I haven’t seen since high school.

Let me preface by saying that I was pretty shy in high school. I didn’t have many friends but there were a number of people that would be kind and say “hi” to me or stop to talk with me now and again. Rays of sunshine: This woman was one of them.

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She was an ultra talented artist. I always admired her gift and her tenacity for choosing to pursue developing it.  And here she was, all grown up, presenting a video about her history, her growth, her successes and how she got to where she is today.

I smiled through the entire video. Because I always felt that she would go places and do great things. She had that mindset, even in high school. It was good to see her both proud of and happy with her accomplishments.

It also reminded me of what I used to love to do back then, and how I had chosen to set my “hobbies” aside to focus on my education and to prepare so that I would get a good job so that I could support myself. Back then, in my household, my joys were “hobbies.” And, to tell you the truth, I didn’t have it in me to push to succeed in them. I couldn’t see art or writing being my “ticket out of there”– “there” being my life of poverty.

They were decisions I don’t regret because they led me to where I am today. My life isn’t perfect but my experiences were crucial to my self-awareness and spiritual development.

Truthfully, I wish I hadn’t let them fall away entirely. And after watching that video I’m even more determined to, in some way, write and to draw every day. They are parts of me I don’t want to lose. They bring me joy and to put them aside to make room for some preconceived notion of what an adult is supposed to do to be a productive citizen is inconceivable to me right now.

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a small work in progress

Doing the things that you love doing not only brings joy to your heart, it affects how you are in the world. If more people experienced joy in the work that they do or the activities they pursue, the world would be very different than it is right now.

Is there anything that you’ve been conditioned to believe you had to give up to become an adult? Think about it. Perhaps a person can be an adult and still do the things that he/she loves doing.

Music for Meditation

Sometimes we forget to take time for ourselves. We’re too busy shuttling the kids to school and activities, working full time and taking care of elders and others. However it is important to try and scrape together some time for yourself to sit back and relax and heal. It’s not always an easy thing to […]

Sometimes we forget to take time for ourselves. We’re too busy shuttling the kids to school and activities, working full time and taking care of elders and others. However it is important to try and scrape together some time for yourself to sit back and relax and heal.

It’s not always an easy thing to do. However, I’ve long been a subscriber to the belief that music can enhance not only one’s mood but also one’s life. And lately, I have used music to help me unwind and de-stress.

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Years ago, I found this awesome website that has the most relaxing and inspiring sounds and music and I’d like to share it with you: myNoise.net.

It’s available for PC and there are apps for iPhone and Android. There are free sounds and more sounds that open up if you choose to make a small donation. There are so many sounds and soundscapes on this site that there’s pretty much something for everyone.

The site is run by Dr. Stephane Pigeon, who has recorded and assembled the majority of the sounds himself.

So, if you’re having trouble relaxing, unwinding, forgetting the work-a-day world and all of its problems, go take a look at his site. He’s not paying me to promote his site. It has been a godsend to me and I wanted to share it with all of you.

Happy listening!

Music for Meditation

Sometimes we forget to take time for ourselves. We’re too busy shuttling the kids to school and activities, working full time and taking care of elders and others. However it is important to try and scrape together some time for yourself to sit back and relax and heal.

It’s not always an easy thing to do. However, I’ve long been a subscriber to the belief that music can enhance not only one’s mood but also one’s life. And lately, I have used music to help me unwind and de-stress.

music-1874621_640

Years ago, I found this awesome website that has the most relaxing and inspiring sounds and music and I’d like to share it with you: myNoise.net.

It’s available for PC and there are apps for iPhone and Android. There are free sounds and more sounds that open up if you choose to make a small donation. There are so many sounds and soundscapes on this site that there’s pretty much something for everyone.

The site is run by Dr. Stephane Pigeon, who has recorded and assembled the majority of the sounds himself.

So, if you’re having trouble relaxing, unwinding, forgetting the work-a-day world and all of its problems, go take a look at his site. He’s not paying me to promote his site. It has been a godsend to me and I wanted to share it with all of you.

Happy listening!

All that is…

We as human beings seek to label and define things. It’s what we do. We can’t help ourselves.

knowledge

In our quest for knowledge and understanding, we name the things in our lives to derive meaning from them.

The Big Bang, the Creator, G_d, Allah, the Father, Spirit and Holy Ghost, Jesus, Muhammad, the Powers that Be, the Aliens, the Universe, the Nothing, All That Is…. In our quest to define things so we can understand them, we’ve given names to the energy that created our world, ourselves and everything around us.

In this climate of mean-spiritedness, must we assert that our words, our labels are the only correct label and that everyone else is “wrong”? Can we not, instead, see how we as human beings are so very similar in our need to understand our world that we name things to gain understanding?

We are all humans, living and breathing, with hopes and desires and dreams, with concerns and fears, with a need to belong, to feel loved and to feel protected.

What if we could see that all these names and labels for the creator of the universe and all within as simply words of a different language, a dialect or colloquialism? Not one of them wrong, just different.

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Because after all, the energy of creation that was here before any of us existed is what it is and will always be what it is, regardless of whatever label we humans place on it. It’s not a matter of right and wrong, only different. Our labels don’t affect it in any way.

What if we embraced the differences, instead of calling them out and rallying against them? What if we could see and understand, that despite the names and labels we give things, that we are all human after all?

What if we all rebelled against this current climate of xenophobia, hatred and distrust and instead embraced the tenets of our collective faiths? What if we helped lift one another up, rather than knocking each other down? What if we truly treated one another as brothers and sisters in this journey of life together?

I can imagine a world where this would be true and it is not only beautiful, it is what we should have. It’s all that should be. And …

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AoG is Always…

No matter how many lessons I learn, or how evolved I become, I keep falling into the trap of feeling sorry for myself. I guess that goes hand-in-hand with being a depressive.

I’ve overcome what once was probably clinical depression. These days, on a daily basis, I’m not depressed. However, it’s so easy to fall into the “woe is me” attitude when things don’t go my way.

One part of studying Reiki teaches developing the practice of an “attitude of gratitude.” Let’s face it: we all have things to be grateful for. The AoG helps to keep things in perspective when things aren’t ideal or when life throws boulders in our paths.
What is the AoG? Well, it’s remembering the good things in our lives.
For example, when I was growing up, we were very poor. Often when it rained it meant dumping out the buckets we had under the leaks in the roof.rain-432770_640
With all this rain we’ve been having in southern California, I can rest easy in the rainy weather. I’m so grateful for having a roof over our heads–a roof that doesn’t leak!
Another example is when I was growing up, I would have to wear layer after layer of clothing in cold weather because we had a flaky wall heater that would always fail in cold and windy weather.
I am so grateful that now when the weather gets too cold, I have an apartment that stays relatively warm and I have jackets to wear that are weather appropriate.
Another more current example is my mom’s battle with breast cancer. I’m grateful to her surgeon because if she hadn’t sent my mom for more treatment after her follow-up visit, we would not have known that she’d suffered a mild heart attack.  Now, she can be treated for her heart condition. I’m so grateful for that.
There’s an expression, “there but for the grace of G_d go I.” And, it is so true!
So when things don’t go your way, or it seems that the fates are against you, try to remember the AoG.
The Attitude of Gratitude always helps to keep things in persepctive. And, when your attitude changes for the positive, good things will have an easier time finding you.

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Busy doesn’t even begin…

As you may have noticed, I haven’t been posting here of late. This is because my mom has had some bad turns in her battle with breast cancer.

After her chemotherapy finished, and while we were waiting for the doctors to decide what to do next (apparently they couldn’t decide and changed their minds a couple of times–and it’s taken valuable time), she had a visit with her surgeon. We were very fortunate that during that follow-up appointment, the doctor realized she didn’t look right. Ultimately, that resulted in her being admitted and the test results showed she had indeed suffered a mild heart attack.

She’s doing better now but between juggling work demands and her need for more care, I’ve had little time to write here. However, I felt an update was neeeded.

As I close this post, I offer a reminder to all who are reading this to take the time right now to hug, call or write a loved-one. Often we put off for a more convenient time what we should do every day. So don’t put it off. They will thank you and love you for it if you take the time to do it now.

Again, thank you for your patience.

Living in the moment means…

 

This morning, as I was bundled up in my comforter fast asleep, my beautiful dog came into the room. Concerned that I was still asleep (it was after 8am and she’s an early riser), she came over to the bed and gently pawed at my comforter revealing my hand. She put her paw into it and gently nudged me.

“Mom wake up,” she was whispering. “It’s a crisp clear day. You’re missing it. Come on!”

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OK, I know dogs don’t talk.

But what else could she have said? Little D is a dog, yes. And as all animals know, the place to be is in the here and now. It’s a beautiful day, she could be having breakfast, and going on her walk in the sunshine, sniffing the grass. She could be hearing the birds, searching for her nemeses in the trees (aka squirrels) and she felt the need to remind me that this precious moment was passing us both by.

To her, each moment is a moment of opportunity to be savored and sleeping it away is something she just doesn’t understand (unless of course she’s tired and wants to sleep :)).

This morning, my Little D was a reminder of how important it is to not only be in the moment but to live in it. To find joy, hope, beauty and adventure every day. It is there, however subtle it may appear to us humans, to be recognized, savored and reveled in.

So, after Little D put her paw into my hand, I smiled and joined her in reverie. After all, the sun was shining and it was the start of a beautiful, crisp winter day.

As naive as this sounds, you have to be willing to be receptive to the good around you. Living in the moment means being willing to shed the grumpiness, the preconceived notions of how things are supposed to be and to see the good that is around you, one moment at a time. Once you start being aware of the good things, more good things will follow. One after the other, after the other.

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